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Chalet School Books In Order

Publication Order of Chalet School Books

The School at the Chalet (1925) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Jo of Chalet School (1926) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Princess of the Chalet School (1927) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Head Girl of the Chalet School (1928) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Rivals of the Chalet School (1929) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Eustacia Goes to the Chalet School (1930) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School and Jo (1931) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet Girls in Camp (1932) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Exploits of the Chalet Girls (1933) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School and the Lintons (1934) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The New House at the Chalet School (1935) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Jo Returns to the Chalet School (1936) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The New Chalet School (1938) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School in Exile (1940) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School at War (1940) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Highland Twins at the Chalet School (1942) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Gay Lambert at the Chalet School (1944) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Jo to the Rescue (1945) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Three Go to the Chalet School (1949) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School and the Island (1950) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Peggy of the Chalet School (1950) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Carola Storms the Chalet School (1951) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Wrong Chalet School (1952) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Shocks for the Chalet School (1952) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School in the Oberland (1952) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Bride Leads the Chalet School (1953) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Changes for the Chalet School (1953) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Joey Goes to the Oberland (1954) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School and Barbara (1954) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Tom Tackles the Chalet School (1955) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School Does It Again (1955) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Chalet Girl from Kenya (1955) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Mary Lou at the Chalet School (1956) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Genius at the Chalet School (1956) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Problem for the Charlet School (1956) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The New Mistress at the Chalet School (1957) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Excitements at the Chalet School (1957) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Coming of Age of the Chalet School (1958) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School and Richenda (1958) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Trials for the Chalet School (1959) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Theodora and the Chalet School (1959) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Joe and Co in Tirol (1960) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Ruey Richardson at the Chalet School (1960) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Leader in the Chalet School (1956) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School Wins the Trick (1961) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Future Chalet School Girl (1962) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Feud in the Chalet School (1962) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School Triplets (1963) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School Reunion (1963) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Jane and the Chalet School (1964) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Redheads at the Chalet School (1964) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Adrienne and the Chalet School (1965) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Summer Term at the Chalet School (1965) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Challenge for the Chalet School (1966) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Two Sams at the Chalet School (1967) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Althea Joins the Chalet School (1969) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Prefects of the Chalet School (1970) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Gay from China at the Chalet School (1944) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Lavender Leigh in the Chalet School (1944) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Chalet School and Rosalie (1951) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
The Mystery at the Chalet School (1970) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Chalet School Fete (1971) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
A Rebel at the Chalet School (1974) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Visitors for the Chalet School (2000) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

The Chalet School is a series of sixty or so novels written by Elinor Brent-Dyer. The stories they tell are set in a school situated in Austria whose job it is to teach girls the proper way to conduct themselves in the world.

+The Story
Elinor, the author, was inspired to write the Chalet school series when she visited Austria in 1924. Madge Bettany, one of her protagonists, also visited Austria in ‘The School at the Chalet’, the first novel in the Chalet School series.

Only 24-years at the time, Madge went to Austria because her younger sister was frequently in poor health and Madge believed that the climate in Austria would help her heal.

Both of their parents were dead and it had fallen on the shoulders of Madge to care for her 12-year-old sister. Madge had a twin brother called Dick but he eventually had to migrate to India as part of his work with the Forestry Commission.

She decided to start the Chalet school merely as a means of earning a living. England would have been the more convenient option but Madge quickly found that the locations there were far too expensive for her plans.

So after considering a few options abroad, she eventually settled on Austria. Madge had no idea when she opened the doors of the Chalet school that first term that her institution would proceed to change so many lives.

The Chalet school started with two pupils, one of them being Madge’s sister Joey and the other being the daughter of a neighbor. For a little while, Madge found that she could manage the running of the school on her own.

But then the numbers began to grow. Girls from all over the country, and then the continent saw fit to attend the Chalet school. Some of the pupils were sent to the boarding school simply because they thought Madge’s institution had the best possible chance of turning them into successful young women
Other pupils were stranded at the Chalet school as a last resort. These were poorly behaved children whose parents and guardians hoped that Madge Bettany would knock some sense into them.

Each installment in the Chalet School series typically has a new student or group of students joining the school. Many of them have personality problems and it takes the actions of their better-behaved classmates and the care of Madge and her helpers to show them the error of their ways.

This theme manifests throughout the Chalet School series. The books do not differ that drastically from other novels from that time period which feature school girls pursuing adventures in boarding schools.

A little bit of studying happens but the math and history classes are interspersed with a lot of playing, dancing, singing, needlework and the like. People did not take girls’ education that seriously in the 1920s and 30s and the Chalet books prove as much.

Madge is more interested in shaping her students into the format that society dictates than she is in teaching them conventional school subjects. It is worth noting that while Madge’s presence continues to hover over the Chalet series, she is more of a supporting character than anything.

While she plays a crucial role in the creation of the school and she even proceeds to teach a few classes in the first novel, she eventually gets married and the consequences of that development draw her away from the minutiae of her school’s operations.

Joey, her younger sister is actually the series’ main character. She starts as a pupil and it is through her eyes that readers explore the Chalet school and all it has to offer. They follow her around as she engages with her fellow classmates, goes on adventures and encounters romance.

Over the course of the several decades during which the Chalet series was published, readers watch Joey grow and take on more active responsibilities with regards to the running of the school.

The Chalet books are quite small, rarely over two hundred pages in length. They are also products of their time. In other words, there is a lot of casual racism, sexism and the like. However, even contemporary readers have admitted to enjoying the books despite some of their dated attitudes.

There are authors other than Elinor M. Brent-Dyer who have written books set in her Chalet school universe. Some of them are sequels. Some are prequels. Some take place within the timeline Elinor created, filling in the gaps between certain books.

+The Author
Elinor Brent-Dyer was an English author born in 1894. She died in 1969 by which point she had written over a hundred children’s books. Her childhood was a difficult one. Her father abandoned them when she was three.

Her mother lived as a widow even though her husband wasn’t dead yet. The author’s brother died from meningitis. Elinor had many brushes with poor health, absent family members, and death, and those themes make numerous appearances in the Chalet School books.

Elinor’s mother was a strong woman who taught the author to live an independent life. Like her heroine Madge, Elinor went on to start her own school. She made an effort to write and publish at least one Chalet school book every single year and, for the most part, she succeeded.

+The School at the Chalet
When Madge’s twin brother leaves her alone to care for their infirm younger sister, she decides to start a school. Madge would have found it more convenient to set up roots in England but all the viable locations were too expensive.

So she settled for Austria, having found that the climate would help Joey, her sister, heal. Now things are finally up and running. But Madge only has two pupils, one of whom is Joey.

She must make do with what she has until the renown of her school grows.

+Jo of the Chalet School
Madge started the Chalet School with just two pupils. Now she has over thirty kids under her care. As the autumn term begins, Joey is ready to undertake a whole new set of adventures. There is never any shortage of excitement at the chalet school, from unexpected floods to unwanted puppies.

Book Series In Order » Characters » Chalet School